Labour’s economic policy: an attack on shareholder capitalism?

To be held Monday, October 28, at Armourers’ Hall


  • Jonathan Ford (Financial Times)

  • Anneliese Dodds MP (Shadow Financial Secretary to the Treasury)

  • Paul Mason (The Guardian)

  • Carys Roberts (Institute for Public Policy Research)

  • Cat Hobbs (We Own It)



“Labour takes aim at shareholder capitalism” – that was the headline on an article by Jonathan Ford in the Financial Times on September 4. He was also lead writer in a story pointing out that Labour’s nationalisation plans could provoke a “flood of claims” from dispossessed shareholders.

Yet the FT has also set a new agenda for itself, entitled “Capitalism: time for a reset”, and Jonathan’s article described the case for new models of governance as an antidote to short-termism and “aggressive value extraction”.

So how do you draw the line between capitalism and wider goals for business, with a perceived more benign effect on society? What sort of reforms might mitigate capitalism’s downside without frightening off those all-important providers of capital?

To lead our debate on these issues, we are delighted to welcome Jonathan Ford, City Editor at the FT, which he returned to from Reuters after co-founding BreakingViews, the online financial commentary unit. He started his career as a corporate financier at Morgan Grenfell.

Our intention is to understand, not to denigrate. So I am also delighted that we have four panellists who (I am sure) will see things from a rather different perspective than we are used to in the City:

-       Anneliese Dodds MP, Shadow Financial Secretary to the Treasury and MP for Oxford East. An MEP for SE England 2014-17, Anneliese also has a background in academia, including lecturing at King’s College London and Aston University. She gained her PhD in Government from the LSE.

-       Paul Mason, is a Guardian columnist, author and broadcaster. His books include “PostCapitalism: A Guide to Our Future” and “Why It’s Kicking Off Everywhere”. Paul has been economics editor at Channel 4 and BBC2’s Newsnight, and he has also covered the digital revolution.

-       Carys Roberts is chief economist and head of the Centre for Economic Justice at the IPPR, and editor of the IPPR Progressive Review. She was a key contributor to the Commission on Economic Justice’s 2018 report, Prosperity and Justice, which recommended changes to taxes on income from work and wealth.

-       Cat Hobbs is the founder and director of We Own It, which she set up to promote public ownership of public services, and to fight against the tide of privatization.

If you (or a colleague) would like to join us, please let us know by emailing or by calling the Centre on 020 7621 1056. As usual, there will be a sandwich lunch.

Kind regards

Jane Fuller

Co-director, CSFI